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Thread: Lansing (Harman) longevity

  1. #1
    Senior Member John Y.'s Avatar
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    Lansing (Harman) longevity

    Hi, everyone:

    Got the idea of starting this thread from a comment by Mr.Widget that my 45 year old Hartsfield shown in my avatar might be the oldest one owner Lansing system in the forum. I really doubt it, 'cause there were so many D130's, etc. sold in the fifties.

    Let's hear from some of you old timers if you have Lansing systems still in use pre-dating my 1959 purchase.

    If we want to expand the topic, I have a Harman-Kardon mono amplifier from 1957 that drove a D130 in a homebuilt (from Lansing plans) C37. The D130 needs a recone so it won't qualify until that is done.

    The Hartsfield avatar picture was made in August 1959, the year I bought it in Atlanta, GA. Although not used every day, I still like to play some early mono albums through this great speaker.

    John Y.

  2. #2
    Senior Member paragon's Avatar
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    Show us more pictures !!!

    Best Regards
    Eckhard

  3. #3
    Administrator Robh3606's Avatar
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    Hello John

    I have a 2 owner I got from my dad an Altec 604C from 1956 that has been in and out of service for the last 40+ years. Have a 12"601 coax thats older still. Both still work and look new. He used that little 601 with a mono transistor radio on the porch in a University corner cabinet for as long as I can remember. That still sounds nice to this day.

    Rob

  4. #4
    Senior Member John Y.'s Avatar
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    Originally posted by Robh3606
    Hello John

    He used that little 601 with a mono transistor radio on the porch in a University corner cabinet for as long as I can remember. That still sounds nice to this day.

    Rob
    I used to (and still do) absolutely amaze people with the Hartsfield driven by a small Sony mono transistor radio using the headphone out. I understand completely. Efficiency!

    John Y.

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    Does this count?

    Hi, John:

    I have in my posession a C34 my parrents purchased new in 1955, complete with the original D130, 175DLH and N1200. I got posession of it when they moved out of the house in 1990 and figured it would be more than they need in a condo. This speaker has been around me my entire life.

    Regards,
    Charley

  6. #6
    Senior Member Steve Schell's Avatar
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    A fellow I know has a distributed music and paging system in his home which he installed soon after the home was built in 1952. He says the ceiling-installed drivers are a mixture of W.E. and Altec 755As. He also has a pair of D130s and 175DLHs installed in a custom wall unit which he built in about 1955. They are in modified C34 enclosures, built into the structure. He says that somewhere he has the sketch of the cabinet modifications that William Thomas drew for him, adapting the C34 to the dimensions of his installation.

    If second owner systems aren't too off topic, I am the second owner of the Lansing Monitor 500A system which was installed in Manual Arts High School auditorium in 1935 or 1936. It is profiled in the "History Found" article in the Perspectives section. Unfortunately I have run it only sporadically since it has been here, and it is currently buried by other early Lansing stuff.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Ian Mackenzie's Avatar
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    Great to hear about some real Lansing Heritage rather then the contemporary recyled churn from EBay.

    Would be nice to see some pictures posted.

    Ian

  8. #8
    Senior Moment Member Oldmics's Avatar
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    Quote from Steve Schell

    "and it is currently buried by other early Lansing stuff."

    If a dig is to happen,count me in with a shovel.

    I KNOW theres some good stuff there!!!!!

    Oldmics


    Who is second owner to many things JBL.

  9. #9
    RIP 2010 scott fitlin's Avatar
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    If its really big stuff.....

    Ill come with a palate, and my forklift! Altec 210 and 211,s no problem for me! We can even move A4,s and A5,s!


  10. #10
    Senior Member Steve Schell's Avatar
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    Easy there fellas- the front bedroom floor probably cannot stand much more weight in there.

    My Lansing Mfg. Co. collection consists of the 500A monitor, three utility Iconics plus a Crawford's speaker using Iconic components, several Lansing tar filled horns, 5 large format 284 and 285 drivers, two pedestal base woofers and an assortment of Lansing radio speakers and other odd bits. One recent score is a 10" armature speaker produced in 1929. I have also collected a dozen or so of the late 1940s flat back D130 and 130A drivers. One of these days I hope to have space to display and use all this stuff properly. The old field coil drivers still work fine and sound extremely good- no junk from LMCO in the 1930s!

  11. #11
    RIP 2010 scott fitlin's Avatar
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    I want to experience field coils!

    I want to hear those field coils! You told me what other old timers told me! They sound great!

    Its about one of the few things I have never heard, but want to.

    There is a french company that currently makes field coil speakers, I have been toying with the idea of building a pair of speakers, or to be more exact, having a pair of cabinets made for me, designed for the drivers that are available!

    I just recently installed two 421-8LF,s that I was lucky enough to find NOS recone kits for all my drivers, and even though they are not the vintage you are speaking of, the way they sound is superb! Very easy on the ear, you hear the music and not the speaker, transparent in that sense, and efficient as hell! The midrange has a sound that I dont hear in much of todays stuff, if at all! You hear it all, but you can stand in front of the stack and not have your ears blown off, and yet, it puts alot of sound into the room!

    I would like to hear what the 1930,s and 1940,s were all about, too!

  12. #12
    Senior Member Steve Schell's Avatar
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    Scott, I'm glad to hear of you positive experience with the 421-8LFs. As far as I know, there are two companies in France making field coil drivers, Supravox and Fertin. I have heard the Supravox full rangers, and they feature that typical field coil relaxed sound.

    To me, field coil loudspeakers are one of those great technologies that nevertheless got steamrollered by "progress". Most people who hear otherwise identical f.c. and permanent magnet speakers will prefer the field coils, and yet they are so rare that most people have never heard them. I like to joke that the handles on the Lansing drivers were probably handy for that final toss into the dumpster, but it is sadly true: the majority of classic American theatre sound gear had been destroyed before savvy audiophiles, mostly overseas, began hunting for it.

    I have had a desire to resurrect this technology for some time now, and my dream is coming true. My friend Rich Drysdale is a fabulously talented machinist, and we are collaborating to start a company to manufacture field coil compression drivers and perhaps complete horn systems. Our first product will be a modernized version of the RCA MI-1428B driver, a stunning design using a 4 1/2" center suspended phenolic cone as a diaphragm. We have utilized modern machining technology, unavailable in the 1930s, to build a phasing plug which provides greatly improved high frequency response. The attached picture is of our latest prototype, which should be pretty close to the production version early next year.
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  13. #13
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    Wow,,, Gorgeous !

  14. #14
    Dis Member mikebake's Avatar
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    Awesome, Steve. Rough idea of a retail price?
    MBB

  15. #15
    Senior Member andresohc's Avatar
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    Man that is cool!
    You motivated me to get out in my garage and build something... anything.

    Auditions possible when you get it assembled?

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